Immunohistochemical detection of Fas and Fas ligand in sarcomatoid renal cell carcinoma

APMIS. 2001 Jun;109(6):469-73. doi: 10.1034/j.1600-0463.2001.090610.x.


Sarcomatoid renal cell carcinomas (SRC) are rare neoplasms associated with a very poor prognosis. The aim of this study was to evaluate biomarker expression and clinical significance in this uncommon renal cancer. Cytokeratin, epithelial membrane antigen, vimentin, desmin, smooth muscle actin, CD34, S-100 protein, MIB 1, p53, Fas and Fas ligand immunohistochemical expression was investigated in seven renal cell carcinomas with sarcomatoid changes. No significant difference between sarcomatoid and nonsarcomatoid areas was observed with the different biomarkers, excepted for Fas ligand. Fas expression was diffuse in sarcomatoid and nonsarcomatoid areas. However, Fas ligand had a higher expression in sarcomatoid in comparison to nonsarcomatoid areas. Our results showed that Fas and Fas ligand are both expressed in renal cancer. We suggest that the aggressive behavior of sarcomatoid carcinoma may be related to a higher expression of Fas ligand by tumor sarcomatoid cells. These findings may indicate that Fas ligand is a possible therapeutic molecular target for treatment of SRC.

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Biomarkers, Tumor / metabolism
  • Carcinoma, Renal Cell / immunology*
  • Carcinoma, Renal Cell / pathology
  • Carcinoma, Renal Cell / therapy
  • Fas Ligand Protein
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Immunohistochemistry
  • Kidney Neoplasms / immunology*
  • Kidney Neoplasms / pathology
  • Kidney Neoplasms / therapy
  • Male
  • Membrane Glycoproteins / metabolism*
  • Middle Aged
  • Prognosis
  • fas Receptor / metabolism*


  • Biomarkers, Tumor
  • FASLG protein, human
  • Fas Ligand Protein
  • Membrane Glycoproteins
  • fas Receptor